Alabama likes its pickup trucks. But the trucks are getting bigger, and so are the blind spots – especially in the front. At greatest risk are small children; the driver cannot see them.
Consumer Reports tested more than a dozen vehicles, and the driver of at least one full-size pickup truck could not see a child seated 15 feet in front. 15 FEET.
In 2020, roughly 500 people, mostly children, were killed by pickups and SUVs that were pulling forward. Tragically, one mother said she heard a thump and discovered she had driven over her young son. She thought the boy was playing in the yard and never saw any indication that he was there.
Front-facing cameras could help solve this problem. Though there is talk of new legislation, it is not a priority so far. Ironically, rear-facing cameras have been required on all new vehicles since 2018.
The problem will worsen as big vehicle sales rise; market share has grown 20% in the last decade. This will not surprise many of us in Alabama, but the most purchased new vehicle in the country for more than 10 years has been a pickup — the Ford F-150.
Most front-facing accidents happen in driveways or parking lots. Safety experts say if you don’t have a forward-facing camera, the only safe way to ensure someone is not in your truck’s blind spot is to walk around the vehicle.
I don’t think I have ever had an auto/truck case where a person intentionally hit a child. But this type of accident happens. It is understandably devastating for the parents, but it is often just as emotionally damaging for the driver who caused the accident.
My best advice may be more paternal than legal — take the time to be safe.
Join us on NBC 15 LawCall here in Mobile every Sunday night at 10:30, right after the news. We are taking a fall break and will offer 5-minute segments for the rest of the year and a live call-in segment every Monday on NBC 15 at around lunchtime. You can also call the Eiland & Ritchie offices at (251) 666-1212. We specifically set aside a few hours Monday morning to answer your questions.
Alabama Personal Injury Lawyer